SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. – The Airlift/Tanker Association honored retired Gen. Walter Kross, former Air Mobility Command and United States Transportation Command commander, during an unveiling ceremony June 14 at its Walk of Fame here.
Kross was the 30th Airman presented with either a bust or medallion at the location, which serves as a way to honor mobility Airmen for their contributions and their service to the nation.
“Kross’ record personifies accomplishments of the highest caliber. Many of his achievements not only shaped our command, but still characterize how we do business today,” said Gen. Maryanne Miller, AMC commander.
“Our headquarters building didn’t even exist when he started. In these roles, he was uniquely poised to forge our air mobility culture, which for the first time, included the functions of airlift and tankers together. He branded the term that is still used today, ‘Mobility Airmen,’ infusing it with the values of inclusiveness and pride.”
Kross, originally from Bronx, New York, commissioned in December 1964 after receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Niagara University.
During his 34-year career, he flew both fighter and airlift aircraft. During the Vietnam War, Kross flew 100 combat missions over North Vietnam in the F-4 Phantom and he later transitioned to flying the C-141 Douglas. He went on to serve as a commander at the wing, numbered Air Force, major command and combatant command levels.
Kross said that he was grateful for the career he had, and to be honored among the other great names on the Walk of Fame that he looked up to throughout his career.
During his time in uniform, he oversaw the deployment of one million troops and 900 tons of cargo during Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He also managed the modernization of the Tunner 60K and Halvorsen 45K loading systems, which ultimately led to the successful deployment of troops following 9/11 and the War on Terror.
Miller finished by saying, “Kross considered Airmen to be the most valuable resource, and his talent, energy, and character vectored them to success, every day. General Kross, on behalf of all of us here today, as well as the countless Airmen who have served under your command, thank you.”